Some thoughts on fear vs belonging in digital life

I’ve been thinking of the power of attention to shape our lives. What we attend to sets the public agenda in terms of what we collectively think is important … in politics, society, culture, the market. However, I think the more insidious power of attention is very personal. Indeed, we attend to what is most …

New Year’s Resolutions 2021

This year was a strange year. COVID-19 kept us at home and made many of us sick - I had extended family members who caught COVID-19 and survived, thankfully. As many of you know, my life revolves around my work as a professor of communication studies and communications management at McMaster University and my work …

Datasci is the third pillar of PR and comms management

The field of professional communications has been evolving for the last 100 years. When it began, with the early work of Eddie Bernays and Ivy Lee, the focus was largely on promotions. This larger communications field split into several over the years. One can argue that public relations, marketing, advertising, investor relations, etc. are all …

Learnings from teaching online for an intensive week

Last week, we had the Summer Residency of the Master of Communications Management program at McMaster University (offered in partnership with the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communication at Syracuse University). However, this was MCM Residency with a COVID-19 pandemic twist - for the first time, we delivered the entire residency via Zoom. It was …

Endings and beginnings

The gathering of students, faculty and alumni who came together for my last Residency Gala Dinner as MCM Director, at Trius Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake. A lovely night. I was very grateful. Sometimes we immerse ourselves so completely in something, that we don't see the years roll by, focused as we are on the exciting task …

An uncanny conversation en route to dinner

I was in Ottawa last week and had the pleasure of having dinner with my friend Lars, who works on the Hill. We had plans to go and have a quick dinner at the food court in the Rideau Centre - I am partial to the Amaya chain for quick vegan and they have a …